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Anti-Counterfeit Authority and Fair Competition Commission Join Forces to Combat Counterfeit Goods Trade

The Anti-Counterfeit Authority (ACA) and the Fair Competition Commission (FCC) of Tanzania have announced a renewed partnership aimed at intensifying their efforts to disrupt and combat the trade in counterfeit goods across the region.

This collaboration was formalized during a benchmarking and collaboration session, where a delegation from the Fair Competition Commission of Tanzania visited Kenya.

Both institutions, mandated to combat counterfeiting and illicit trade while promoting fair trade practices, underscored the importance of concerted regional action in addressing this growing challenge.

Against the backdrop of enhanced bilateral talks between Kenya and Tanzania, the two East African economic powerhouses are focusing on strengthening trade relations and overcoming barriers that impede their commercial ties.

Counterfeit and illicit products pose significant threats to economic stability, public health, and safety, not only within the region but also globally.

Current trade between Kenya and Tanzania stands at Ksh 90 billion annually. According to the OECD’s 2018 report, counterfeiting represents one of the largest criminal enterprises globally, with estimated domestic and international sales ranging from $1.7 trillion to $4.5 trillion annually, surpassing even drug trafficking and human trafficking in scale.

 Regional assessments by the International Peace Institute indicate an annual market share of Ksh 180 billion for counterfeit trading within the East African Community as of 2017.

In Kenya alone, counterfeit trading was valued at Ksh 70 billion in 2017, reaching Ksh 90 billion in 2029, rivaling key sectors like tourism, tea, and coffee – traditionally top earners for the country.

Speaking during the event, Dr. Robi Mbugua Njoroge, Executive Director of the Anti-Counterfeit Authority, stressed the urgent need to address the counterfeit menace, highlighting the detrimental impacts on the economy, investor confidence, and innovation.

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Echoing the sentiment, Mr. William Eroi, Director General of the Fair Competition Commission, emphasized the patriotic duty shared by both agencies to stand for fair and open trade, ensuring economic growth and prosperity across their nations.

The renewed partnership opens avenues for law enforcement agencies to develop innovative approaches and strategies in combating counterfeit trade.

Areas of collaboration will include information sharing for enforcement actions, public outreach, research, and expertise exchange, with the overarching goal of enhancing investigative capabilities and intelligence networks to successfully tackle counterfeit and illicit trade activities.

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